Christine Assange is in Quito, Ecuador, “…not…to demand asylum, I come to humbly ask, as his mother.” Julian Assange has been boltholed in the Ecuadorean embassy in London since June 19, following his repeated failure to have the British courts block his extradition to Sweden to complete an investigation into two allegations of sexual assault.
In a live interview on local television, Mrs. Assange said, “He is freedom loving. He cannot run. He cannot go outside to see the sky. Outside, the UK police wait like dogs to take him. He cannot exercise the way he normally could and he’s under extreme psychological stress.” Of course he is suffering. He’s no longer lounging around a great manor house being waited on hand and foot. He’s stuck in a small spare room in a small embassy.
Mrs. Assange held back tears, holding a picture of her 41-year-old son as a toddler (oh, puh-leeze), explaining to the Ecuadorean people that “As a mother I’m terrified for what would happen to my son if he’s extradited to the United States.” She’s certain, as is Julian, that if he goes to Sweden he’s be handed over to the U.S., even though it is easier under agreements reached after 9-11 to extradite from Great Britain. “He’ll then go to the United States, where he’ll be possibly executed or perhaps tortured in a prison and will not face a hearing as we’ve seen with Bradley Manning.”
Frankly, my dear, he’s not that freaking important.
Let’s see, the last time we executed a spy was 1953, and Julian Assange wasn’t a spy. We didn’t prosecute any of the newspaper editors who published the Pentagon Papers or the New York Times editors who published the Manning documents. We have the one person responsible for stealing those documents and are processing him through our military court system, including hearings. The transcripts of Pfc. Bradley Manning’s e-mails with Adrian Lamo do not indicate anyone else was involved in the theft.
Mrs. Assange met with the Foreign Minister, Ricardo Patino, on Monday and presented him with “evidence” that the United States is hellbent on extraditing her poor baby, where he fears he would face execution. So, what “evidence” did Christine Assange present? A “report” saying that a “secret grand jury” was convened in the “Assange case.” Like all those people who claim that every little thing in the Manning documents was a top secret kept from the public, the grand jury investigating the WikiLeaks publication wasn’t exactly a secret, at least no more secret than any grand jury is. Eric Holder announced the results of the investigation over a year ago. There is nothing in the American civil or military statutes that covers WikiLeaks.
The publication of the State Department cables seriously damaged our relations with Ecuador, which is the real reason Assange thinks he can get asylum there. Mrs. Assange said that Julian chose Ecuador because its constitution “enshrines human rights” and it doesn’t have the death penalty. Neither does Sweden. And we tend to use our death penalty only in cases of murder, on a state-by-state basis and in only limited circumstances for a Federal murder charge. Since Assange didn’t steal the documents, he’s not a spy. Since he’s not an American citizen, he isn’t a traitor. What’s left for a Federal death penalty? We didn’t execute the young American captured at Tora Bora, or the Shoe Bomber or the Underwear Bomber or the Times Square almost-bomber, or the Blind Sheikh or the twentieth hijacker. Hell, we haven’t even executed Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. Unless Assange moves to Yemen, joins Al Qaida and rises to the top of their management chart which would qualify him for a drone rocket up his derriere, there’s no reason for us to execute him. We won’t even send him to Gitmo because he’s not an enemy combatant. Contrary to Assange’s paranoid delusions, we do have rules here in the colonies.
The Ecuadorean government said that it will not announce its decision until after the Olympics. If they decide to grant Assange asylum, they have to figure out how to get him out of Britain. Their embassy is a row house, not a stand-alone building. There is no way to transfer Assange to a vehicle without having him step on British soil — or have his sedan chair bearers step on British soil. That is why those “dogs” of British bobbies are stationed at the front and rear entrances to the embassy. Assange will be arrested the moment his entire body is outside the embassy, and since he has finally reached the limit of the extraordinary British patience, he will not be released from custody until he is handed over to the Swedish authorities, who will deny him bail during the investigation because he has proven to be such an extreme flight risk.
Maybe it’s time for the parents of two young women who have waited for over two years to simply complete the investigation into their charges against Assange to journey to Ecuador and explain to the government what justice delayed has meant to their daughters. These young women were like so many who have come into contact with Assange — they were dazzled by the image of David fighting the Goliath of big nasty governments, they were enthralled by the persona, only to find out that they were being bedded by a self-confessed sexist pig who didn’t give a damn about them except as some place to park his unsheathed johnson. Those young ladies deserve to have this put behind them, to move on with their lives with some resolution to all this. They have spent two years watching Assange knowing better than anyone how he uses people, watching the world fawn all over him and defend him and elevate him from smelly streat bum to fashionable business man. No one is giving them free housing in country manors. No one is buying them new wardrobes. No one is holding street demonstrations for them, demanding justice. There are only two victims, and Julian Assange isn’t one of them.